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There are a number of complementary methods that can be safely used along with standard cancer treatment. These methods may help relieve symptoms or side effects, ease pain, and help you enjoy life more. While they aren’t fully tested, many are not usually harmful and can be used along with your treatment.
Here are examples of complementary methods that some people have found helpful and safe when used along with standard medical treatment. Be sure to talk with your cancer care team before trying any of these.
Some other types of complementary methods, such as dietary supplements, have generally not been proven to help prevent or treat cancer or its symptoms, and might sometimes even cause harm. The American Cancer Society recommends discussing any type of complementary treatment you are considering with your cancer treatment team before you try it.
Our team is made up of doctors and oncology certified nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.
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National Cancer Institute. Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Last updated November 24, 2020. Accessed at https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/treatment/cam on April 6, 2021.
National Cancer Institute’s Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Health Information for Patients. Accessed at https://cam.cancer.gov/health_information/for_patients.htm on August 18, 2021.
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Are You Considering a Complementary Health Approach? Last updated September 2016. Accessed at https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/are-you-considering-a-complementary-health-approach on April 9, 2021.
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Last Revised: August 25, 2021